06/27/10 7:03 PM ET
Moyer achieves multiple milestones in win
Lefty reaches 4,000 innings, allows 506th home run
By Todd Zolecki / MLB.com
The official mentioned the amount of innings Moyer had pitched in his career, and Moyer responded that he would pitch 4,000 innings before it ended. The official sounded skeptical.
"If I have the opportunity I'm going to do it," Moyer replied.
Moyer reached that milestone -- and a less appealing one -- in an 11-2 victory over the Toronto Blue Jays at Citizens Bank Park. Moyer, who allowed just six hits and two runs in seven innings, became the 40th pitcher in baseball history to throw 4,000 innings. He also allowed the 506th homer of his career, when he allowed a two-run home run to Vernon Wells in the third inning. It set a new Major League record. Robin Roberts, who had held the record since he retired in 1966, moved into second place with 505 homers allowed.
Moyer, who earned his 267th win in the process, knew the home run record would fall eventually.
"You get enough opportunities, you will [set it]," he said.
Moyer allowed his first home run on June 23, 1986, at Veterans Stadium against Phillies second baseman Juan Samuel. He allowed his second home run to Phillies third baseman Mike Schmidt.
Moyer said he does not remember those home runs, but he clearly remembers the first hit he allowed, which came against Phillies center fielder Ron Roenicke on June 16, 1986, at Wrigley Field in his Major League debut.
"A double down the left-field line," he said. "I'll never forget that."
Moyer said it is difficult to appreciate what he is accomplishing while he is in the middle of it. So he does not focus on the legends he has passed in the record book recently, names like Bob Feller (who he passed with his win on Sunday), Carl Hubbell, Bob Gibson, Juan Marichal, Whitey Ford and Jim Bunning.
"Suddenly you lose focus of what you need to do, and that's go out and pitch," Moyer said. "There's a time and place for that, and it's not during the season. Because I know I will be distracted."
The Phillies retrieved the historic 506th home run ball, although Moyer didn't seem too excited about getting it. He said if he got it, he might give it to his dog or one of his children.
He much preferred to talk about pitching 4,000 innings.
"After that conversation [with the Seattle official] I started thinking, 'Four thousand innings. That's 12,000 outs. That's pretty cool,'" Moyer said. "I've fooled around with it. How many walks do I have? How many batters have I faced? And then I'll sit sometimes in the dugout and go, 'Are there 12,000 seats in this ballpark?' Just play games with it. You know what I mean? There are many people that have done this, people that have had unbelievable careers. It's part of the history of the game. We're all part of the history of the game, but I'm enjoying this."
Moyer has allowed homers to 322 batters in 42 ballparks. Manny Ramirez hit 10 home runs against Moyer, more than any other player. Joe Randa was homerless in 48 at-bats against Moyer, the most at-bats against Moyer without a homer.
Moyer has allowed 15 homers against the Phillies: Lance Parrish (four), Schmidt (two), Luis Aguayo (two), Lenny Dykstra (one), Ron Jones (one), Chris James (one), Von Hayes (one), John Russell (one), Rick Schu (one) and Samuel (one).
But not to be lost in Sunday's milestones, Moyer is 3-0 with a 1.96 ERA since he suffered the worst start of his career, on June 11 in Boston. He is 9-6 with a 4.30 ERA this season, and 6-4 with a 3.44 ERA in his last 10 starts.
Moyer is 47 years old. He is pitching like he can do the job a few more years.
"Having the opportunity to play this game as long as I have, it's pretty cool," he said.
Polanco likely needs second cortisone shot
PHILADELPHIA -- Placido Polanco had his left elbow wrapped in a compression sleeve Sunday at Citizens Bank Park.
He has an injury that won't go away.
Polanco is expected to receive a cortisone injection into the elbow on Sunday, which would be his second shot this season and keep him from playing until Tuesday at the earliest. Polanco originally injured the elbow on April 21, when he was hit by a pitch against Atlanta. It flared up in late May, when he received his first shot. He missed six games from May 28 to June 3, and has missed the past two games after he aggravated the elbow diving for a ball on Friday.
"There's inflammation in the capsule," Polanco said. "You use it every time you swing. You take [batting practice]. You take a million practice swings. Every time you do that, it's irritating it."
Rest is the best option for Polanco.
"Rest is not a choice," he said. "We're going to have to take care of it somehow. Maybe the shot. Keep treating it, you know?"
Polanco said he mostly felt fine after he received the first shot, but occasionally felt it when he swung the bat.
"Nothing major. Nothing bad," he said. "This time? Pretty bad."
Prospect Aumont trying to get on track
PHILADELPHIA -- Domonic Brown got Phillies fans excited last week when the Phillies promoted him from Double-A Reading to Triple-A Lehigh Valley.
Phillippe Aumont, one of the team's top pitching prospects, has had a much rougher 2010 season. He went 1-6 with a 7.43 ERA in 11 starts with Reading before the Phillies demoted him to Class A Clearwater. Aumont, 21, allowed five runs in just two-thirds of an inning in his first appearance for Reading, but has thrown seven scoreless innings in his past two appearances.
"Looking back, I probably made a mistake in moving him to Double-A," Phillies assistant general manager Chuck LaMar said. "We debated it long and hard in Spring Training. He had eight Minor League starts going into this year. And for a young guy at his age, that's not very many starts to be starting in Double-A. He pitched so well at the end of Spring Training, I think that swayed us in our decision."
Aumont was part of the trade that sent Cliff Lee to the Mariners, which makes his struggles more prominent than a typical prospect.
The Phillies need him to produce.
"I think things got a little complicated for him," LaMar said. "Put yourself in the young man's position. First-round pick and all the expectations that go with it. Then he had some arm tenderness in Seattle. Then they moved him from a starter to a reliever. Then he's part of a huge trade. Then we make him a starter again. Then we change his arm angle.
"I think we did a really good job of confusing him. We're going to try to simplify things here. Phillippe, go have fun, go compete, and work on a couple of things at a time.
"He's just had a lot of issues. It's nobody's fault, just circumstance. I think he's thought about it and tried to please everybody, and right now he's in the process of competing and having some fun, having some good results and making the game a little simpler, and I think you're going to see him throw well the rest of the year."
Madson makes rehab appearance
PHILADELPHIA -- Phillies right-hander Ryan Madson made a rehab appearance Sunday for Class A Clearwater.
Madson, who has been on the disabled list since May with a broken right big toe, allowed one home run and struck out one batter in one inning. Madson said last week that he hoped to rejoin the Phillies' bullpen before the All-Star break next month.
Todd Zolecki is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.